Stab Magazine | Kelly Slater's Sights Are Set On Another World Title

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Kelly Slater’s Sights Are Set On Another World Title

45 going for 12. 

news // Oct 28, 2016
Words by stab
Reading Time: 2 minutes

Kelly Slater will turn 45 in February, just one month before the World Surf League season kicks off at Snapper. And according to an interview and article on the WSL’s website, he’ll be taking “one more stab at a title” in 2017. Kelly holds the accolades of youngest (20) and oldest (39) surfer to have ever won the world title and after a reinvigorating back half of the year, he’s announced that he’ll be coming back for one more (and he never mentioned retiring). It seems the 11 on his singlet is not enough; he’s searching for the current world champ, John Florence’s 12.

“I feel like a proud brother,” Kelly told the WSL after John won in Portugal. “I’ve known John since he was in the single digits. When he and his brothers were so small, I could get him on my back and have him stand up while I was body surfing.”

Kelly’s return will be 25 years after his first title, which is probably around the age of whoever happens to be reading this at the moment. He’s surfing’s Steve Jobs; the gent’s accomplished more in the 44 years of his life than most could do in a century. From Baywatch to Outerknown, Kelly Slater’s Wave Company to video games, 11 world titles to 540’s, an autobiography to Slater Designs, and the list goes on.

https://www.youtube.com/embed/2rmLWw0kIO4

But now that all his side projects are steaming along nicely, he says he’s ready to put all his focus into another world title. “I’m going to really try to put a year together,” he told the WSL. “I’m pretty inspired by what panned out the back of this year. So I’m going to take these next four months, get my body together and get my motivation and my boards and everything right and see if I can really put together a focused year.

“Up until Gabriel winning a few years back, it was Mick, Joel and myself winning titles. But then Adriano kind of snuck one in for the older generation. I think it was fitting to see Gabriel, Jordy and even Kolohe in the mix, and John.”

Whether or not we’ll see the return of Mick next year is uncertain, although the man managed to surf five events and still qualify. Joel, who said he might have “one or two years, or one or two events” left in him is also a toss up. However, it’s worth noting that contractually once Billabong team riders go off tour their salaries are significantly reduced. Which leaves Parko with the decision whether or not to continue his victory laps (he’s ranked 8th) and stick around for the cash or leave and don’t look back.

Read the full Kelly Slater interview right here.

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